July 1, 2009

Mean Green Machine

The big news this year was that the Emerald Ash Borer was officially found here in St. Paul, Minnesota. I'm sure it was here earlier than this year, but it hadn't been confirmed til this spring.

Several years ago, I attended a seminar and watched a video about the threat of the Emerald Ash Borer, and how it had killed tens of millions of ash trees in Michigan and eastern U.S. states. They warned against transporting firewood from other states, but there were no other instructions on controlling the spread.

I’ve spotted these Ash Borer sticky traps in a few Ash trees now in St. Paul. These are to discover where the infestations are…not to actually “trap” them. The Huge Minnesota State Fair is acting to protect and save their Ash trees. This is something they didn’t do when Dutch Elm Disease came along. The MN State Fair lost many big Elm trees during that time. Since all the big commotion this spring, I haven’t heard any new info about the spread.

So is this the beginning of the end for Ash trees in Minnesota? We certainly have a lot of them here. Not my personal favorite tree, but I see the value in diversity.
I would like to suggest Hackberry (Celtis occidentalis L.) as a good replacement tree for Ash. They are very hardy, withstand multiple conditions, they’re great for street plantings, and grow well in the areas affected by Emerald Ash Borer. This is an image of Hackberry leaves.

The University of Minnesota is always a good place to go for information.
And St. Paul’s website on the matter:


Francis Bell said...

WOW-Very cool site, I really enjoyed the pictures!!! Thanks for brightening my day-Francis http://www.geothermalquestions.net

gloria bonde said...

Hey, hi - When I attended the master gardeners training we were warn about the Green Borer (sounds like a comic book character) - not here yet. We live in the Black Hills, big camping area and they fear it - Gloria